Happiness is returning to your husband after a week 3,000 miles away and finding the most beautiful flowers in center of a clean table, in a clean kitchen, in a clean house.
Happiness is finding beauty and peace in what's around you.
Happiness is an unusually warm northwestern day. A day that your husband just so happens to get off work early. A day that you had planned a feast for supper, that is topped off by the ability to play and grill outside together.
Returning from visiting family is always bittersweet. So sad to be leaving them again, so happy to see my husband again. Happiness is whatever you make it. It's everywhere around you, and it's everywhere inside you. It's your job to find it. It's your job to bring it to life. It's your job to feel the warmth of the sun, even if it only pokes through the clouds once every 20 days. Bottle it up and take it with you.
Happiness is letting that mess go...
...and just enjoying "little moments" with the most important and most special people in the entire world.
We all know how powerful a mother's love is. A mother's love empowers you to run into a burning building, lift a car, take a bullet... a mother will do anything to protect her children. This mother turns into quite a momma bear when anyone talks about my little cubs.
There's also the love I have for my husband. I never would have imagined that someone could mean as much to me as my children. I always thought they'd be #1, and my husband would be #2. Somehow, they're tied. I really feel one with my husband, we're a unit, blended together by our love for each other.
However, lately I'm noticing something I've never given much thought to. Sibling love. Wow. Sibling love is something you can really learn from.
Sibling love, now that is unconditional. From the day my daughter (now one) came home, my son (now 4) has been absolutely smitten with her. Those concerns I had during pregnancy about jealousy and dividing my time well so they'd both feel special.... unneccesary! It never matters what kind of day we're having, he loves her so much. She can scream, she can cry, she can throw a tantrum, but he doesn't even notice. Take last night for example. My daughter decided she didn't want to sleep from 11 to 2 last night, and we're at my parents' house so my son has been sleeping with me. She ended up waking him up by hitting him in the head while I was trying to get her to go to sleep. What did he say as soon as he woke up? He smiled and said, "She loves me."
He's also a great teacher. When she pokes him in the eyes, nose, cheeks, or ears, he teaches her the names of those body parts. He tells her about colors and shapes and everything he can think of.
When I see my kids interact, I see love. It's bright, it's emotional, it's pure; it's love. Unwavering, unconditional, sibling love.
Someone has a birthday coming up!!!!!!!! While visiting family, we went ahead and had a little birthday party. Everything turned out wonderfully, so I just have to share the party food and decorations! Her theme was owls, and pink/white/black. YAY!
If you're in the eastern VA area, I had her cake made by Some10Sweet in Suffolk. She has made three other cakes for me, including my wedding cake. They are always stunning AND delicious!
I got the idea for the birdnest snacks here (also on Pinterest). It's just chow mein and melted chocolate. Luckily her birthday is close to Easter and I could get the jelly beans for them!
This idea also came from something I saw on Pinterest. I used strawberry cake mix to make the cookies, and hugs in the center. It looks pretty cool if you leave the cookies on the hot pan with the "hug" already on, instead of putting them on the cooling rack, too! (bottom plate) hehe :)
I ordered the invitations and thank you cards from Vistaprint; her pictures were done by Jennifer Magee Photography. I will post more of those when I get the CD. =D It's at home waiting for me!
I made the birthday girl's banner using my Cricut Expression, with the Alphalicious and Hoot 'n Holler cartridges. I also made confetti for the table with it.
It all came together nicely, I think. ;)
Birthday girl didn't dig into her cake like I'd hoped, but she enjoyed it. She is very precise and likes to pick up small things with her thumb and forefinger. She had quite a time trying to pick at the owl's eyes.
I hope everyone's had a great weekend! I know mine was full of family and fun!